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Aperion Readies Wireless Home Theater

9/08/2010 09:58:26 AM Eastern
Portland, Ore. - Direct-to-consumer marketer Aperion Audio plans year-end shipments of a wireless home-theater system incorporating Summit Wireless technology to delivers 24-bit uncompressed audio to active speakers.

Aperion will demonstrate its product at the CEDIA Expo in Atlanta, having shown a preproduction prototype at last year's show.

The system is the $2,499 Intimus 4T Summit Wireless 5.1 home-theater speaker system, which consists of five active speakers and a powered subwoofer, all with Summit wireless transceiver built in. The speakers talk to an included wireless audio hub, which replaces a traditional A/V receiver and incorporates surround-sound decoders and HDMI, coax, optical and analog connections to TVs and other audio sources. The system is expandable to 7.1.

The underlying technology, developed by fables semiconductor company Summit Semiconductor of Hillsboro, Ore., is promoted as delivering 7.1-channel sound quality that's "virtually indistinguishable" from wired quality. Summit promotes the technology as overcoming the sound quality, interference, latency and cost challenges associated with other wireless technologies designed for multichannel home theaters. Its speaker-level, speaker-delay and phase controls are said to be so flexible that they can be used to focus the audio sweet spot into the corner of a room where a sectional couch might be placed.

The system features SpeakerFinder technology to automatically discover speakers in the room and assign channels to them. MyZone sweet-spot calibration takes seconds to produce a time-aligned sound field for the listener by automatically adjusting delay and volume to a selected listening position.

Summit achieves its sound-quality goals by, among other things, transmitting uncompressed 48kHz/24-bit PCM over the air, using forward error correction to overcome latency problems, and using the congestion-free 5.1Gz to 5.8GHz U-NII band. That spectrum, which features 23 non-overlapping channels, has been approved by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) for worldwide unlicensed use near the IEEE 802.11a/n wireless-network band.

Other technologies that avoid interference include spread-spectrum OFDM (orthogonol frequency-division multiplexing) modulation, four-antenna diversity tuning in the speakers, dynamic frequency selection to hop to a channel without interference, and up to 10ms of audio interpolation to fill in lost packets.

Aperion Audio markets in-room and custom-installed speakers as well as active soundbars under its own brand. Summit Semiconductor, the fabless wireless-chip maker, was spun off earlier this year from Focus Enhancements. Its technology can be integrated into home theater speakers, sound bars, audio/video receivers, TVs, Blu-ray players,  MP3 players, set-top boxes, and gaming systems, the company said.
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